If the video will not load, go here: VIDEOI listened to what one representative said, "I knew it would affect families and children with disabilities, but we had no choice" surely they DID have a choice; they chose to do this anyway. I do not think there was a lot of thought into what to cut. I would bet there were superfluous programs that could have been cut instead. What worries me, upsets me considerably is this; I have not seen one news program covering this in Tucson since the DES offices let people go, I am very discouraged that our ABC, NBC, FOX, and CBS affiliates do not think something this HUGE is not newsworthy. Maybe I missed the reports, but I have to think that my friends would forward them to me, and I have not received one forward since the rally here. If there are some, please send me the links.
All of this makes me uneasy and I wonder how it has happened so quickly? Did the people that work for DES know this was coming? Is this why our SC told me to prepare for many changes in the near future when we met months ago? Why couldn't they tell families this was coming, was it on purpose; to prevent the outcry? I feel I need answers from all of them.
Many people working for DES and DDD are now unemployed, those that remain on the job have increased client loads and will have to work without pay periodically. I understand they are under stress and times are hard for them too. I feel very badly that this happened to them. I believe that by cutting financial support for these life changing programs the AZ government is telling the therapists and SC that what they did for their clients was not necessary, that their good work was unessential. Now thousands of people are now out of work because "We had no choice". However, what message is this sending to my family and families like mine? It says very loudly; "Your children are not important" and my heart is heavy with sadness, I feel betrayed as well. I will repeat, the fact that no one talked to our families about this before the immoral choice was made, that we were dismissed as irrelevant, is terribly upsetting to me.
I have been trying to keep positive, to keep in mind that IF the state of AZ accepts federal stimulus funds (seems there is talk about the Governor refusing a portion of the stimulus monies) there may be a re-infusion of financial support for some the programs the AZ government unceremoniously cut. I do not want to go to the place in my head that says the government has made it clear they do not value my children. That to them they are not worthy of resources being spent on them. I am concerned that if the administration is willing to take this step, how much further are they willing to take this attitude, this dismissal of people with disabilities and the elderly people who had received this very necessary aid?
However, I do not understand why people are not distressed about these budget cuts. I believe that it sets a precedent; that if they can do this to vulnerable children, families, and the elderly, welfare recipients, what is next; who is next? Do able-bodied employed people feel safe because they are not in the group that is affected? Do they know how quickly their lives can change and they may find themselves there? (injury, illness, job loss, birth of a child with a disability, an aging parent)
I am ashamed of our AZ Government and angry with our new Governor, to do this as soon as she gets into office is abominable. Will this be her legacy, to take from people with disabilities, to rob them of their future?
So they say “WE HAD NO CHOICE”, how many people doing something contemptible said this after the fact?